Christmas 1976. Under the christmas tree, such a big present... I have to say that at this period, it wasn't really hard to make me happy... Cars ? No way. Soldiers and disguisement : not interested. No, there was only one thing that i was ordering on the Santa Klaus list : trains ! The amazing number of my varied offered rail sets is exhausting (HO Jouef trains, Wooden train from Brio, mechanical train, enchanted train from Vulli : who remembers ?) But the arrival of the LGB set will make me forget all the other ones ! At the beginning, just a Stainz steam loco so-called by myself Caroline, and its two small passenger cars, a circle of 12 tracks radius R1, 4 figurines and a transformer. And hours of fun included !! Even if it was a bit risky to offer such a present to a 4 year-old kid, my grand-ma' didn't really know that she put me in a tricky trap, very invading for the coming years...

Few months later, new tracks and cars joined the collection : a ESSO tank car (1978) and a green open car (1977) hardly trained with many unappropriate uses (as carrying fireworks !). The tank car still contains a piece of a construction game (CLIPO), unable to get it off ! lol when you are a kid, you can't avoid making stupid things yourself and these first cars would have to suffer so much more than the latest ones... Let me inform you that the handy-car 2001 lost its valiant driver Victor and no longer works ; and a car for trunks, always hated by the young station master I was, due to its incredible ability to become derailed... The 3d lascar was a brown boxcar bought in 1982. I wanted a mailcar with red lights but I had this one in replacement... Its wheels even lubricated were all the time rubbing... I have to say that the LGB equipment is very hard to find, especially in Montpellier. There's only one retailer and everything has to be ordered on catalog, which is quite frustrating for a 10 year-old kid. Even more when the fight with the two other Lima and Jouef networks is very hard. Easier to use and install, cheaper, parents prefer to buy products from these 2 ones ! In spite of this strong competition, the LGB train will go on running quite often in the gardens of my two grand-parents during school holidays, waiting for a second loco well deserved for much more fun...

To be continued...